Report: Sony BMG Restructuring Being Discussed
June 5, 2006 at 7:40 AM (PT)
SONY and BERTELSMANN AG are discussing options to restructure their jointly-owned SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT group, according to the HOLLYWOOD REPORTER. Sources say that several different options are being considered. In one scenario, SONY would acquire part or all of BERTELSMANN's 50% stake in the venture.
BERTELSMANN, which announced last month that it was seeking to raise $5.8 billion to purchase the 25.1% of the company held by investor group BRUXELLES LAMBERT, has already put its BMG MUSIC Publishing arm up for auction, and selling part or all of its stake in SONY BMG MUSIC could be an attractive option at this time, especially given the apparently troubled nature of the relationship.
While a BERTELSMANN spokesman denied the company was interested in such a sale, and SONY had no comment for the story, the sudden resignation of SONY MUSIC LABEL GROUP Chairman DON IENNER and President MICHELE ANTHONY last week was seen by many as evidence of the continuing discord between SONY and BERTELSMANN management.